Kindling Words West rotates the guest speaker honor through our three strands (editor, author, illustrator). In 2024, we look to our illustrator strand for inspiration. We are excited to welcome Jessixa Bagley to the community!

Jessixa Bagley
Photo Credit: Jenny Jimenez

Jessixa Bagley is a Seattle based artist and children’s book author/illustrator. She is also a fine artist and comics creator with a BFA in painting and printmaking. In her work, she is drawn to animals as well as emotional themes/experiences inspired by her childhood in the Pacific Northwest. Prior to her book career, was a selected artist for New American Paintings and received a GAP Grant from the Washington State arts organization Artist Trust for her fine art drawing. 

Jessixa has had work featured in numerous publications such as: The Chicago Reader, Nickelodeon Magazine, and Highlights Magazine. Her debut picture book, Boats for Papa, received numerous awards and accolades including the 2016 SCBWI Golden Kite Award for best picture book text and a 2016 Washington State Book Award. Her picture book Laundry Day received a 2018 Ezra Jack Keats Honor Award for writing. Many of her books are also Junior Library Guild Selections. In 2019, her children’s book work was displayed at a solo show at the Bainbridge Island Museum of Art in Bainbridge, WA.

Jessixa also often illustrates for other writers and artistically collaborates with her husband, Aaron Bagley. Their most recent collaboration, Duel, (published in November 2023), was an Indie Bestseller and is their first graphic novel together. In addition to creating books, Jessixa also travels domestically and internationally to speak and teach children’s book writing and illustration. She frequently teaches writing through The Writing Barn in Austin, Texas. Jessixa lives in Seattle, WA with her husband and son.

Each morning after breakfast, Jessixa will nourish and nurture the creative work we’re undertaking at Kindling Words West. For more information about Jessixa and her work, head to her website or your nearest bookstore!

Please send all questions or correspondence about Kindling Words West to registrar Sunshine Bacon at KWW@KindlingWords.org
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If you are an author or illustrator you must have at least one book published or under contract that meets ALL of these criteria. If you are an editor you must currently work for a publishing house that meets ALL of these criteria, or if you are currently an editor whose prior work history matches these criteria, you are also eligible (and please check all five boxes below).
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